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Elliott Sadler wants to take Dale Jr. on a Late Model road trip next summer

Matt Weaver | STS

Elliott Sadler wants to take Dale Earnhardt Jr. on the ultimate stock car buddy adventure next summer.

Sadler will make his final NASCAR start as a full-time Xfinity Series driver for JR Motorsports in November at Homestead Miami Speedway. Sadler hopes to be crowned champion that night but is already looking forward to spending more time with his family and friends, but also hopes to spend a couple of weekends in a Late Model Stock close to home in the Carolinas and Virginias.

And he wants to do it with his buddy, Dale Earnhardt Jr.

“Oh we will,” Sadler said over the weekend at Richmond Raceway before an Xfinity Series race that also included Earnhardt in his first start since his own full-time retirement last November.

“We’re going to cross that bridge together.”

Sadler specifically said during the winter that he hopes to make starts at South Boston Speedway where he is the 1995 track champion. He wants to give the annual Martinsville 300 a shot too.

Count Dale in.

“Yeah, man, maybe we can get away and goof off a couple of times a year for as long as he wants,” Earnhardt said after the race. “Certainly, we would have a lot of fun doing that.

“It’s funny, because someone asked how much fun I had tonight, and I told them I haven’t felt this way since I raced Late Models. You just got to the race track on a Friday night and race with your buddies.

“I miss that. We would get halfway down to (Myrtle Beach), get a MTN DEW and Slim Jim. After the race, you don’t go to the Waffle House, you go to the Huddle House because they have French Toast.

And that’s coming from a self-proclaimed Waffle House enthusiast.

“I miss how free and easy those days were. Because as you get higher, it becomes more competitive inside the car. It gets harder and harder to find enjoyment in it. The guys who win all the time have a frown on their face.”

But nights like Friday at Richmond took him back to those days, and he hopes that maybe he and Sadler could replicate them on a smaller scale next summer and beyond.

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Matt Weaver is the owner and founder of Short Track Scene. Weaver grew up in the sport, having raced himself before becoming a reporter in college at the University of South Alabama. He is also the associate motorsports editor of Autoweek Magazine and its website, which allows him to cover the highest levels of the sport.

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